The dollar store — a hosts best friend

This past summer, I went on a rather costly south East Asian adventure and had to figure out ways to cut costs in running my air bnb to make up for it… so I went to My local chain of $1 stores where everything is actually $1 and found some AMAZING products that have lasted up to 6 months (and no complaints from guests, either) all of them are house keepe approved.

LA’s totally awesome laundry detergent + fabric softener — all of my linens come out clean and smelling bleachy (something I think my guests like because no irritatingly overwhelming smell and it makes them feel like everything is sanitary) — I also use dryer sheets from there, I throw 3-4 in with each load and it leaves a very subtle floral scent.

LA’s totally awesome orange cleaner concentrate — I live on the 3rd floor of a walk up building and you can smell this refreshing citrusy scent from the bottom of the 2nd floor steps. I use it for everything from the wood floors to the counter tops. It doesn’t smell overly chemically and cleans great. after 6 months and 2 regular size cleaning bottles worth of refills, it’s still 90% full.

32 oz bottles of shampoo, conditioner and body wash— I bought a nice wall mounted bottle holder to go into my walk in shower to keep everything streamline and organized. I just fill them up with $1 products. The bottles have lasted me 6 months and over 50 guests.

Comet toilet bowl cleaner — does the trick, my toilet is never really dirty. I do a quick sanitize with the brush and leave the water blue to give guests the confidence that the toilet is fresh.

Plain ol comet — super size for $1, cleans the shower wonderfully.

Garbage bags— my guests tend to not create much waste because they’re busy exploring a major city, so this may be subjective as these bags are very thin. But as someone who things garbage bags are the dumbest purchase ever (why buy something you’re literally just going to throw out and are given for free with every purchase??) they work wonderfully for my space and look a hell of a lot better than grocery store bags.

They’ve also got all the other essentials: sponges, big bottles of bleach, granola bars, coffee creamer pods, oat meal packages, single serve cookie packages, coffee…

I leave a toiletry basket in my cupboard full of anything one could need: razors, shaving foam, feminine products, toothbrushes, toothpaste, leave in conditioner, even nail varnish and it didn’t cost me more than $10.

it’s become my one-stop-shop for all of my air bnb needs. I use natural products in my own home, but with the amount of professioal cleanings and guests I go through in my space it just wouldn’t be worth it. People are only there for a few days at a time, so I don’t think they mind one bit if the linens don’t reek of lavender and eucalyptus or there aren’t organic hemp and chia seed granola bars.

Check it out if you haven’t!


I have probably seen you there!

I found a $1.00 bottle of heavy duty toilet bowl cleaner that annihilated the stubborn lime scale on my basement toilet. Maybe I don’t want to know what’s in it.

I have found nice, soft, thick cotton hand towels, lint rollers, inexpensive white polyester sheers for the back porch, pots for plants, pain reliever, etc. there.

And Awesome cleaner (along with white vinegar) is my go-to all around cleaner!

I have a bathmat from there and it’s my favorite one that I own, and the hand towels/wash cloths are simple and do the trick just as well as any others.

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Shower caps - 8 for $1. They aren’t sturdy, but at 12.5 cents each, I can give one to every guest, although most don’t use them.

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Shower curtains. Hand sanitizer. Liquid soap. Pine Sol. And chocolate bars for me!

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A little pricey, but looks great (and hides how cheap I am :wink:)


What’s the cheapest anyone has seen stick deodorant of a recognizable brand in a dollar store or elsewhere?

Travel size is fine.

Every time I go into a dollar store, there are so many things that are way over a dollar, which irks me to no end. Maybe I’m not going to the right one?

I go to the dollar tree, so everything really is $1. I’ve gotten speed stick and secret there. I provide spray deodorant for my guests… just in case.


In my city it’s Dollar Tree where everything is truly a dollar. That said, the Walmart also tries to be competitive on many things and I’ve seen products there for .97 to undercut Dollar Tree.




Pump hand soap, deodorant, travel toothbrush toothpaste packet, are a few pennies cheaper at Walmart. Unless I’m buying a large quantity I prefer to one stop shop at dollar tree.

Totally awesome orange cleaner does a great job on cleaning black moldy build up from the walls on my screen poorch and vinyl railing.

I buy a 32 oz refill of hand soap for $1 and fill up a decorative dispenser I also got at the $1 store. It’s clear witha chrome pump, basic and does the job.

I also buy a pack of 5 toothbrushes for $1 and just a tube of crest or aim or whatever they have. Guests can help themselves to whatever they need. The pack toothbrushes are terrible quality (I tried to clean the grout with them once :blush:) but my guests never stay more than a week, and no one Really uses them anyway

If a guest forgets theirs and like me they hate that first thing in the morning tooth scum feeling a bad toothbrush is still appreciated. It will work until they can get to the store and buy a good one

I’m sure they’re fine for teeth, just not for grout :rofl:

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THANK YOU so much for the link to the soap dispenser! I have been looking for something similar, but as I produce my own line of soaps and hair products, the ones I have seen were a bit clinical-looking for me. This is exactly the look I want and the fact that I don’t need to drill the wall is even better. I found it on Amazon UK for just about the same price as you paid.

Just one question: Do you think the sticky labels are removable? I would want to replace them with my own, though I suppose I could always put them over the top if necessary.

Thanks again!

I found lots of Dollar Store items for Great dea like Lifebuoy 10 oz For one dollar laundry detergent arial for $1 etc.

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We have a Dollar Store which, as someone else mentioned, does go over a $1 but it is still cheap and convenient. One thing that I like to buy their is placemats that actually are $1. They can be wiped clean but if they get ratty, I throw them out and start fresh. I put them on nice wood furniture where people tend to place drinks or eat.

Does that work? I find people’s tendency to put drinks on the furniture and away from any kind of mat, coaster, etc strangely common. It reminds me of the dogs here who have 1500 sq ft of indoor tile to relieve themselves on but prefer the 150 sq ft of rugs instead.

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Good idea! I have noticed that guests are not using coasters and I have water rings all over the granite countertop.

I bought double walled tumblers. I have plastic, glass and stainless steel. I’ve been using all of them, rotating between my part of the house and the Airbnb to see which I like best. In a beach rental like yours I’d probably look for some blue toned ones to go with your decor.

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Thank you so much! I’ll see if Amazon has them.

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